An Indonesian passenger plane that went missing two days ago was destroyed when it slammed into a mountain, killing all 54 people on board, the country’s top rescue official said. The black box has also been recovered from crashed passenger plane, added the official.
Rescuers only reached the crash site Tuesday after being hindered by rugged, forested terrain and bad weather.
“The plane was totally destroyed and all the bodies were burned and difficult to identify,”
National Search and Rescue Agency chief Henry Bambang Soelistyo told The Associated Press. “There is no chance anyone survived.”
He said that so far 53 bodies had been recovered, and that they would be taken to Jayapura, the capital of Papua province, so they can be identified. Smoldering wreckage of the Trigana Air Service turboprop plane was spotted from the air Monday.
The ATR42-300 twin turboprop plane was flying from Jayapura to the city of Oksibil when it lost contact.
The plane was carrying 49 passengers and five crew members on a scheduled 42-minute flight. Five children, including two infants, were among the passengers.
Soelistyo said the wreckage was at an altitude of 2,600 meters (about 8,500 feet). Much of Papua is covered with impenetrable jungles and mountains. Some planes that have crashed in the past have never been found.